Does Having a Stroke Affect Post-Stroke Driving Ability?

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Strokes are dangerous – they’re one of the leading causes of death in the United States. Many people, however, do recover from a stroke. One important question about recovery from stroke is whether a stroke can have an effect on a person’s post-stroke driving ability.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, every year in the United States more than 795,000 people will have a stroke. Of those 795,000 people, 130,000 will die as a result of stroke, or one death from stroke every four minutes.

For those people who do survive a stroke, an area of interest to researchers is the impact of the stroke on tasks associated with daily function, such as driving, during the recovery phase. A recent small-scale Canadian study suggests that stroke may have an impact on driving ability in the short term.

The study, performed at Toronto’s St. Michael’s Hospital, found that one month after having a stroke, participants in the study exhibited problems with the more complex tasks of driving, such as staying within their designated lanes and making left turns at busy intersections, which require managing traffic and making snap decisions.

Simpler driving tasks, such as maintaining speed and the ability to come to a complete stop, were not affected.

The stroke patients participating in the study had suffered minor strokes, and appeared to have fully recovered from the stroke itself. The results of the study highlights the need for physicians to discuss with patients the dangers of driving too soon post-stroke.

If you or someone you love has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, Bradley I. Kramer and his experienced legal team are here to help you obtain the compensation to which you are entitled. Contact us today to schedule your free consultation.

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